The City of Victoria is looking to finalize plans to implement Sunday parking fees for on-street parking later this month. (File photo)

Victoria gears up to axe free parking on Sundays

Council vote puts Sunday parking fees towards bus passes for youth

A Victoria council decision supports eliminating free Sunday parking to help pay for youth bus passes.

The vote, made at a special committee of the whole meeting on Feb. 11, came following a motion by Mayor Lisa Helps to charge regular rates for Sunday parking starting May 1, and dedicate the revenue to youth transit.

“It would be great to give all of our residents free transit, but we need to start somewhere,” said Helps during the meeting. “Just like recycling education started with kids in school so kids would go home and tell their parents not to throw out pop cans, so [is] true with transit.”

Speaking with Black Press Media, Helps said the initiative is also about tackling poverty.

“This puts that money – up to $545 a year based on BC transit youth rates – back into parents’ pockets,” she said. “And down the road, back into youths’ pockets.”

Currently, the city generates approximately $7 million annually from nearly 2,000 on-street parking spots that charge for use Monday to Saturday from 9 a.m. to 6 p.m.

Victoria is still investigating the total revenue that could be generated from Sunday parking but staff used pro-rated Saturday statistics and past survey results to determine that Sunday parking could bring in up to $600,000 a year.

RELATED: CRD endorses Climate Emergency Declaration

RELATED: Victoria youth skip school for climate strike

Helps said she will be asking the transit commission to provide free transit for youth in the region and discussed collaborating with BC Transit and the local school district on the project.

“This motion doesn’t take care of everything but it certainly says that should transit fail us, we’ll have close to $600,000 a year towards youth transit passes,” said Helps, adding Sunday parking revenue estimates could be conservative.

Helps proposed a pilot project start this fall, but Coun. Ben Isitt said the project should move faster and be fully implemented by September.

“I hope our council will take the position that we fund it this year and put our money where our mouth is in terms of being in a climate emergency,” Isitt said. “I think we have to demand results if we are going to put out these funds and not just hold out on a promise to young people that they will have access to transit, I know it’s a priority to them.”

In estimates, staff assumed parkade parking would remain free on Sundays and noted that the Yates Street parkade – which frequently reaches capacity on Sundays – will likely become even busier.

Sunday parking fees and revenue are expected to be finalized in the city’s budget presentation on Feb. 28.

RELATED: Victoria considers instating Sunday parking fees to subsidize youth transit passes



nina.grossman@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Victoria votes to slash sister city celebrations

Victoria will only celebrate its anniversary with Morioka, Japan this year

Dozen Metchosin ‘barn cats’ on the hunt for new homes

Broken Promises Animal Rescue hoping to re-home feral cats

Shortlisted options for Beacon Wharf replacement cost between $6.3 and $14.2 million

Select committee will investigate various questions around proposed replacement of iconic wharf

Swimmers, advocates plead to Victoria council for new Crystal Pool facility

Many swimmers dependant on the pool are afraid to be without any athletic resources

VIDEO: Mass coronavirus quarantines seen in China won’t happen in Canada, authorities say

‘If a case comes here, and it is probably … it will still be business as normal’

Vernon woman suing McDonald’s for spilled coffee

Woman seeking nearly $10K, says employee failed to put lid on properly

Diners’ health tax not catching on in B.C., restaurant group says

Small businesses look for options to cover employer health tax

B.C. comic wins judgment after club owner slaps cellphone out of his hands

Incident happened last summer when Garrett Clark was performing in Abbotsford

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of Jan. 21

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

VIDEO: Dashcam records driver’s near-miss near Sooke

Driver crossed four lanes of traffic and back over again, barely missing three other vehicles

Owner surrenders dog suffering from days-old gunshot wound to B.C. SPCA

The dog was also found to be emaciated and suffering from a flea infestation

Most Read